Overtime Pay Legislation Pt 2

Overtime Pay Legislation Pt 2

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
I’m Bob Larson. Substitute Senate bill 5172 would have the opposite affect of the original bill, putting all of agriculture on the hook for three years back overtime pay, with interest.

After the Supreme Court’s November ruling that agriculture’s overtime exemption was unconstitutional, Washington Policy Center’s Initiative on Ag Director, Pam Lewison says many ag employers are faced with a death sentence …

LEWISON … “It’s a lot harder to figure out how to absorb this huge chunk of money all at one time, in terms of an award of this retroactive lump sum of money, and when I say a lot harder, I mean business-ending impossible. It’s not a feasible thing to do.”

The overtime lawsuits are being pushed by farm labor activists and unions …

LEWISON … “I think the first thing to bear in mind is that in Washington state, approximately 1% of all farm workers are represented by a union. So, it’s a little bit frustrating to see how much sway they have because they represent such a small number of farm workers.”

The mood overall, Lewison says is a bit terrifying …

LEWISON ... “Overall, in the agricultural community, everyone is really afraid right now. I think people are afraid for their workers, I think they’re afraid for their businesses because they’re concerned that their voices and their concerns are not being heard.”

Lewison says being heard is the key in this conversation. Listen tomorrow for more on that.

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